Korean Startup Scene

I have to admit I am not plugged into it enough.

I watch Scott and his winner/loser video every week – this stuff is pure gold :: https://www.l2inc.com/winners-losers-snapchat-hits-a-snow-storm/

Was interesting to see him mention the Korean app – snow, which is the same Naver folks who brought us Line :: http://www.bustle.com/articles/173843-snow-a-snapchat-like-app-with-filters-will-take-your-selfie-game-to-the-next-level

So basically we have a straight up SnapChat clone that is targeting only Asia which in certain pocket countries can work. Not saying it is a novel strategy but certain companies can pull it off.

What I also find interesting in this NYT piece is the opinion on the Korean tech scene ::

“For the longest time, the holy grail for a lot of Korean founders was to get U.S. market share,” he said. “They all failed, and failed because there were so many issues. There was no American working culture, they didn’t have a network in America, they didn’t speak English.”

“With the rise of China and China’s infatuation with Korean culture, it’s breathed new life into Korean start-ups and founders,” Mr. Chae said. “This is a market that happens to be a lot bigger than the U.S., that seems to be more welcoming for Korean technology and culture than the Western world ever was.”

It’s a great point – why bother with the USA at all if one can essentially focus on Asia and win it? With the growth of SEA region, the 4g penetration coming in India and all the other fringe possibilities like the Middle East – an Asian startup could essentially go big in every place but Europ and America and due well enough to not care.

I see Singapore has a pretty amazing tech HQ – the equivalent of USA’s Delaware for startup incorporation but I often wonder if Taiwan, Japan and Korea ramped their startup tech game in hopes of dominating Asia would that be more powerful than the Chinese brands trying to do the same thing?

I think the core issue still for pure Asian startups focusing on Asian markets is exit strategies – do they sell to American companies? Is there a go-to stock exchange besides the USA they can list on? Going forward as the startups scene keeps heating up I think the I can’t raise seed, I can’t raise an A will start to turn into – where do I go public? 

Hoping one of these regions can figure out a market to list on that works for the Asian scene.

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